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I've been webmaster of a site for a few years that contains a large listing of holiday properties. Against my will the powers that be want to implement a white label product that would for many clients of the product produce a near identical copy of our main website.

Naturally alarm bells have been ringing for me and I'm concerned that these near identical copies of our site could seriously harm the main website.

Aside from "don't do it", are there any practical strategies that could be employed to avoid this issue ?

I've read others talking about changing the structure of pages and their layout but it sounds to me as if that could well not be enough to avoid google detecting duplicate content.

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  • So your question is about how can you get away with doing something wrong that you know you shouldn't do?
    – Rob
    Apr 2 at 11:05
  • That's an incredibly simplistic summary of the issue @Rob . There are inventive ways around this naturally if you start altering copy/content. Besides, doing what you don't want to do/something you know isn't the right thing is the reality for any developer sometimes.
    – AdamJones
    Apr 2 at 14:10
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I can posit a few, although the efficacy depends on the desired result. There is, of-course, no free lunch.

Embedding the master site in an iframe with styling being done dynamically/outside the iframe.

Specifying the canonical url in tbe copies (https://ahrefs.com/blog/canonical-tags/)

Franchising out syndicated regions so local search goes to the franchisee and a more general search goes to the franchisor.

https://developers.google.com/search/docs/advanced/guidelines/duplicate-content is a worthwhile read.

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